Afghan national security adviser quits. Resignations of 3 other officials rejected

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani accepted the resignation of his national security adviser but refused the resi...

Posted: Aug 27, 2018 4:03 AM
Updated: Aug 27, 2018 4:03 AM

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani accepted the resignation of his national security adviser but refused the resignations of three other security officials as the country battles the Taliban.

"Today the ministers of defense, interior affairs and the director of the national directorate of security presented their resignations to the president. The President did not accept their resignations and asked them to continue in their jobs and gave them necessary guidance for the improvement of security situation," the President's office tweeted Sunday.

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However, Ghani accepted National Security Adviser Mohammad Hanif Atmar's resignation, replacing him with the nation's ambassador to the US, Hamdullah Mohib, the president's spokesman, Haroon Chakhansuri said.

Afghanistan's TOLO News channel quoted Atmar as saying he resigned over "serious differences over policies and approaches at the top level of government."

Ghani said accepting Atmar's resignation had been "difficult" but that it was "for the benefit of the country," TOLO reported. Mohib, 35, took over as national security adviser Sunday morning.

In May, Mohib wrote an opinion article for CNN after a terror attack on a cricket match in his hometown of Jalalabad that had been organized to celebrate peace and unity during Ramadan. In the article, he described his hopes for a peace that would transcend political and ethnic divisions, saying: "My generation envisions a different Afghanistan."

Deadly attacks

For now, violence continues in Afghanistan, with a string of deadly attacks this month.

On August 10, the Taliban launched a brazen attack on the strategic city of Ghazni, south of the capital Kabul, seizing key buildings and trading fire with security forces.

At least 150 people were killed and 40 injured, the majority of them Afghan security forces.

The Taliban had last attacked a major urban center in 2015 and CNN's Nick Paton Walsh described the assault on Ghazni as the militant group's "most serious challenge to the authority of Afghanistan's government in three years."

"The Afghan government has said it wants to control the territory in which 80% of the population lives by the end of 2019," Paton Walsh wrote. "It currently controls 65%, up from 64% this time last year."

On August 14, 39 soldiers died in Baghlan province when the Taliban overran their base. And 17 troops were also killed when their base in Faryab was also overrun.

The following day, at least 34 people were killed in a suicide attack targeting an education center in Kabul. A Taliban spokesman denied responsibility for that attack.

Push for peace

On August 19, Ghani offered a month-long ceasefire with the Taliban.

The two sides had a brief truce in June and Ghani said then that the government was looking to engage in peace talks with the Taliban and hoped to convert it to a political group.

The Taliban have been waging a bitter fight in Afghanistan, with the ultimate goal of ruling the country and imposing its strict interpretation of Islamic law. The group controlled Afghanistan until its 2001 ouster by the US-led coalition that invaded following the 9/11 attacks.

In recent years, a resurgent Taliban have taken control of significant swaths of the country and raised questions about the Afghan government's ability to protect the country.

The Taliban grew out of the US and Saudi-backed mujahideen movement that fought a bloody guerrilla war against the Soviet Union after that country invaded and occupied Afghanistan in 1979.

The Taliban are formally banned in Russia, but in recent months Moscow has stepped up contact with the group. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said last Tuesday that representatives of the Taliban would take part in talks in Moscow next month on the future of Afghanistan.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 314509

Reported Deaths: 7247
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21626259
Hinds20359415
Harrison17934309
Rankin13634278
Jackson13447246
Madison10099217
Lee9980174
Jones8381163
Forrest7683152
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Holmes189173
Clay185454
Stone182833
Tallahatchie178841
Clarke178080
Calhoun170832
Yalobusha164338
Smith162434
Walthall133945
Greene130633
Lawrence128624
Montgomery126942
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123142
Carroll121829
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107133
Tunica105726
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
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Kemper95828
Franklin83823
Quitman80916
Choctaw76418
Wilkinson67331
Jefferson65728
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 532895

Reported Deaths: 11001
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson771431528
Mobile41089808
Madison34837505
Tuscaloosa25810454
Montgomery24355588
Shelby23730249
Baldwin21191309
Lee15892171
Calhoun14522316
Morgan14324279
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St. Clair9702243
Lauderdale9441242
DeKalb8846187
Talladega8255176
Walker7246277
Autauga6938108
Jackson6815112
Blount6694137
Colbert6310134
Coffee5524119
Dale4850111
Russell443238
Chilton4308112
Franklin426282
Covington4136118
Tallapoosa4039152
Escambia393977
Chambers3578123
Dallas3557152
Clarke351161
Marion3130101
Pike311377
Lawrence300798
Winston275673
Bibb261564
Geneva251477
Marengo249664
Pickens234761
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Butler216469
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Cherokee184745
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Monroe178040
Washington167639
Macon159950
Clay156857
Crenshaw152757
Cleburne149141
Lamar142935
Lowndes139053
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